Jonathan Swift Awards 2010, Oct 30th
I attended The Jonathan Swift Awards Ceremony 2010 last night in the Saggart Arts Centre. The evening was nicely organised – in the interval was a miniature concert by local musicians, and they laid on food and drink afterwards. Overall, it felt like a pleasant coming together of local groups in the area.
The theme of this year’s competition was ‘The Letter’ and was judged by Hennessy Award winning poet Maria Wallace. Some entries reflected on the Swift, Vanessa and Stella love triangle, but there was a great variety amongst the entries with pieces focused on both the past and the contemporary world and on a great variety of places from Ireland to the Lebanon.
I was very pleased that Mervyn Ennis paid tribute to Lucan Creative Writer’s Group own Joan O’Flynn in his introductory address. It’s nice to see she’s as fondly remembered outside Lucan as she is within it.
It was good to see a talented writer like Joan Power rewarded with joint First place in the Short Story category. Her story ‘The Letter’ is a wonderfully deft and witty contemporary piece about sibling rivalry. The other Joint First winning entry was Alan McGonagle’s clever first person piece ‘Dear Father.’
I was delighted to take first place in the Poetry category with a poem called ‘Curlicue.’
Overall, this seems to be a competition that is getting it right and constantly developing year-by-year (the certificates are particularly nice this year). If you are interested in the challenge of a themed competition it is well worth entering.